Robinson Cano’s selections for the 2012 Home Run Derby were completely justified, and so were the boos coming down on him in Kauffman Stadium.
Robinson Cano went from hero, winning the title in 2011 in Arizona, to zero as the American League Captain in 2012. Cano was cheered every single time he swung and failed to clear the wall, which I believe he hit three times. The reason being, Kansas City fans were bitter about the fact that Cano didn’t choose the Royals’ Billy Butler. Butler is tied for 16th in the American League with 16 home runs.
Instead Cano selected the top three finishers in this year’s contest, in Mark Trumbo, Jose Batista, and the winner Prince Fielder.
The Tigers’ first-baseman won the HR Derby for the 2nd time in his career. He blasted 28 long balls out of Kauffman Stadium, 8 of them splashed in the fountain. He’s now two-for-two in the Show Me State; Fielder won his first Derby three years ago in St. Louis. The four longest drives of the night belonged to Prince with a pair estimated at 476 feet, but everybody’s talking about Cano and the Kansas City fans.
Let’s face it. If it wasn’t for the booing, the most interesting spectacle of the night, other than John Kruk chowing down on ribs (we’ve got that in slow motion!) would have been George Brett imagining Normar with “little poopies in his pants” or correcting Chris Berman’s internal compass. Fans in Kansas City let Yankee second baseman have it for not picking their hometown guy, and I see absolutely no problem with it.
I’ll be honest, I did feel sorry for Cano after his round as he stepped out of the box. You could see the disappointment in his eyes. Then I saw the Yankee patch on his sleeve and remembered makes millions of dollars. He’ll get over it.
The Royals and Yankees have history. Besides, you only have to go back to last season when the last time something like this occurred. Fielder was the NL Captain last year in Arizona, and he picked his teammate Ricky Weeks over Diamondback’s star Justin Upton. However, the booes wore off when those two actually starting hitting home runs.
Someone should have told Cano that’s all he had to do.
Aaron Kirn is the Director of Video for Rant Sports.
Follow him on Twitter at @AaronKirn